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Wednesday, 7 March 1984
Page: 510


Senator HARRADINE(10.31) —I rise to oppose the motion that the resumption of the debate on the Judiciary Amendment Bill be made an order of the day for a later hour this day. Whether or not arrangements have been made between the Government and the Opposition, whether or not arrangements have been made between the Government and the Australian Democrats, whether or not arrangements have been made between the Whips for this matter to come on today, I certainly had no opportunity of seeing this until it was dumped on my desk a few minutes ago.


Senator Georges —Nor have I.


Senator HARRADINE —Senator Georges and Senator MacGibbon say that they had not seen the Bill either. Quite frankly, Senator Georges voted against the amendment that the resumption be made an order of the day for the next day of sitting, as is usual under these circumstances. As I understand it, no government adopts the attitude that it will have a Bill pass through Parliament in one day unless there is some sort of agreement between all concerned. No agreement has been made with me about this matter.


Senator Georges —You are one solitary senator in this place.


Senator HARRADINE —I may be the only solitary senator but after the next election I may not be.


The PRESIDENT —Senator Harradine, confine your remarks to the motion that the debate be adjourned.


Senator HARRADINE —I have been elected to this chamber and it is my responsibility to those who elected me to inisist on the proper procedures being followed. In the event of a vote taking place on this Bill or any amendment being made to it, opportunity is given to honourable senators, including me, to study the Bill and to examine the consequences of it. This I have not been able to do. As a matter of fact, at the present moment I am engaged in preparing an amendment to the income tax Bill that I thought we were going to debate this morning. Frankly, I am concerned and surprised that the Government is pursuing this matter in the way in which it is. I hope that the motion that the debate be adjourned to a later hour of this day will be either defeated or adjourned until such time as some agreement can be reached of the matter.